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marurun
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by marurun Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:16 pm

Sarge wrote:170) Super Contra (ARC)

Finished these two up. Will probably blabber more about them tomorrow.


Can't wait to get your take on the arcade Super Contra. The arcade versions just feel SO different from their NES ports.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by prfsnl_gmr Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:21 pm

isiolia wrote:The only other Shantae game I've played is a bit of the original on virtual console, and it seemed pretty tough, at least in some ways. Otherwise, I couldn't really compare them.


Sarge is right. The original game, which (as Sarge correctly observed) plays a lot like Castlevania II, can be very tough, and it has a few questionable design decisions. The next two games, however, are delightful adventure-platformers (i.e., metroidvania) games. Both are immensely fun (especially Pirate's Curse), but neither is particularly challenging. You really should give them a shot.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by ElkinFencer10 Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:28 pm

prfsnl_gmr wrote:
isiolia wrote:The only other Shantae game I've played is a bit of the original on virtual console, and it seemed pretty tough, at least in some ways. Otherwise, I couldn't really compare them.


Sarge is right. The original game, which (as Sarge correctly observed) plays a lot like Castlevania II, can be very tough, and it has a few questionable design decisions. The next two games, however, are delightful adventure-platformers (i.e., metroidvania) games. Both are immensely fun (especially Pirate's Curse), but neither is particularly challenging. You really should give them a shot.

I'm still on the first one (though I have the whole series including the one coming out this month), but it's that exact difficulty you mentioned that's frustrated me and made me keep quitting. I'll probably dive back into it after I finish Shin Megami Tensei IV Apocalypse and put on my big boy britches this time so I actually finish it.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Sarge Thu Dec 15, 2016 3:29 pm

Yeah.

So, I'll go ahead and talk about Super Contra, at marurun's prompting. :)

There's a lot to like here. You can see the guts of the NES game here, all over the place. It looks pretty good, the level design is at least somewhat interesting, and I like the overhead stages more than the base stages of the original game.

The problem, though? Your aiming. It's terrible. See, everyone knows Contra is a twitch game. You really need to be able to respond to threats quickly. And the way aiming is handled here doesn't let you do that. You can aim in eight directions, but it takes time for your gun to swivel through to each direction, so you have shots in between. It's basically set up a lot like the old Intellivision controllers, where you had 16 directions you could fire. And that would be just fine... if you could immediately hit those directions, but you can't. Instead, you have to rapidly change the direction of your fire (more than 90 degrees) to immediately hit the direction you want to aim. It really is awful.

On top of this, Super Contra (and the original) are limited continue games. You can get four continues before it's all over, regardless of how much money you feed in. While I understand the reasoning, given how short the game is, it's also a bit disappointing if you just want to blast through in a low-stress way. I must confess that I monkeyed with the dipswitches to get more lives so I didn't have to play so carefully. I got to the last boss the previous play, and I have no doubt I could eventually get through it. I also have no doubt that if the controls were better, I'd destroy this game like I do the NES ones. :twisted:
Last edited by Sarge on Thu Dec 15, 2016 3:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by BoneSnapDeez Thu Dec 15, 2016 3:35 pm

Contra and Super C are both waaaaaay better on NES.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Sarge Thu Dec 15, 2016 3:40 pm

BoneSnapDeez wrote:Contra and Super C are both waaaaaay better on NES.

Absolutely. They're longer, have more interesting platforming, rock-solid controls, the whole package. They're still two of the best run-and-guns ever.

Also, if anyone has a hankering for that style of Contra, give Super Cyborg a shot. That was ridiculously difficult, but excellent.

EDIT: Arcade Contra is down. I'm claiming legit on this one, too. I jacked up the lives, but it didn't take me all of them. Not enough continues to exhaust the supply I would have had on the default settings, anyway. I did another fun run after since it's so short; while I was sloppy all the way until the end, I only died twice on the last boss, which is pretty good for only having the pea shooter! (And to be clear, I have legit-cleared the game before, many years ago.)

EDIT 2: When you want more Contra, you play Sunset Riders. :)
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by PresidentLeever Fri Dec 16, 2016 12:23 am

You can get up to 6 credits in Super C ARC by setting it to free play or 7 credits (not a typo) in the options. I was able to beat it legit on Easy with that amount but it's still annoying.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Sarge Fri Dec 16, 2016 12:36 am

Super Contra is tough, but the toughest bit for me was that last boss. I've got to figure out a better way to handle that fight. I can 1CC both NES games, but I doubt I'll ever do it on the arcade, or want to. Much like Bionic Commando, the NES versions are far superior.

It was really nice to transition to Sunset Riders and have a dependable firing mechanism. Not my cleanest run, but I think I picked up some strats the next time I play the SNES port. Ignoring that slide move was clearly to my detriment!
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by ElkinFencer10 Fri Dec 16, 2016 11:12 am

Games Beaten in 2016 So Far - 119

January (20 Games Beaten)
1. Shadow Warrior - Playstation 4 - January 1
2. The Order: 1886 - Playstation 4 - January 2
3. Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop - Wii - January 3
4. NyxQuest: Kindred Spirits - WiiWare - January 4
5. Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA F 2nd - Vita - January 5
6. Shadow the Hedgehog - Gamecube - January 9
7. Fairy Bloom Freeia - Steam - January 10
8. Petit Novel Series: Harvest December - 3DS - January 13
9. Gas Guzzlers Extreme - Steam - January 14
10. Muramasa: The Demon Blade - Wii - January 16
11. Project Zero 2: Wii Edition - Wii - January 19
12. Killzone: Liberation - PSP - January 20
13. Sin & Punishment: Star Successor - Wii - January 20
14. Kirby's Epic Yarn - Wii - January 24
15. Sakura Wars: So Long, My Love - Wii - January 25
16. Corpse Party - PSP - January 25
17. Freedom Planet - Wii U - January 25
18. Earth Defense Force 2: Invaders from Planet Space - Vita - January 25
19. Silent Hill: Homecoming - Xbox 360 - January 26
20. Life is Strange - Playstation 4 - January 28


February (8 Games Beaten)
21. Corpse Party: Book of Shadows - PSP - February 2
22. Megadimension Neptunia VII - Playstation 4 - February 12
23. Dr. Discord's Conquest - NES - February 13
24. Corpse Party: Blood Drive - Vita - February 17
25. If My Heart Had Wings - Steam - February 18
26. Missing: An Interactive Thriller - Steam - February 18
27. Her Story - Steam - February 18
28. Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright - 3DS - February 26


March (8 Games Beaten)
29. Saints Row 2 - Steam - March 1
30. Saturday Morning RPG - Playstation 4 - March 3
31. Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest - 3DS - March 6
32. Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze - Wii U - March 8
33. Pokken Tournament - Wii U - March 20
34. Moe Chronicle - Vita - March 22
35. Tom Clancey's The Division - Playstation 4 - March 23
36. Yoshi's New Island - 3DS - March 28


April (13 Games Beaten)
37. Alien Rage - Steam - April 1
38. Alien Breed: Impact - Steam - April 2
39. Alien Breed 2: Assault - Steam - April 3
40. Alien Breed 3: Descent - Steam - April 3
41. Bravely Second: Ballad of the Three Cavaliers - 3DS - April 6
42. Quantum Break - Xbox One - April 7
43. Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric - Wii U - April 8
44. Akai Katana - Xbox 360 - April 9
45. Otomedius Excellent - Xbox 360 - April 9
46. Chasing Dead - Wii U - April 10
47. Fire Emblem Fates: Revelation - 3DS - April 14
48. Ratchet and Clank - Playstation 4 - April 20
49. Starfox Zero - Wii U - April 23


May (6 Games Beaten)
50. Aero Fighters 2 - NeoGeo - May 8
51. Bravely Second: End Layer - 3DS - May 11
52. Uncharted: Golden Abyss - Vita - May 15
53. Doom - Playstation 4 - May 20
54. Uncharted 4: A Thief's End - Playstation 4 - May 22
55. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants in Manhattan - Playstation 4 - May 25


June (13 Games Beaten)
56. MegaTagmension Blanc + Neptune VS Zombies - Vita - June 2
57. Republique - Playstation 4 - June 3
58. Splatterhouse - Playstation 3 - June 4
59. Spec Ops: The Line - Playstation 3 - June 5
60. 1943: Battle of Midway - NES - June 6
61. Mirror's Edge: Catalyst - Playstation 4 - June 12
62. Fire Emblem: Mystery of the Emblem - SNES - June 13
63. Homefront: The Revolution - Playstation 4 - June 15
64. Gone Home - Playstation 4 - June 15
65. Double Dragon Neon - Playstation 3 - June 16
66. Vanquish - Playstation 3 - June 17
67. Epic Dumpster Bear - Wii U - June 20
68. B3: Game Expo for Bees - Wii U - June 21


July (7 Games Beaten)
69. Raiden V - Xbox One - July 16
70. Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE - Wii U - July 16
71. Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3 FES - Playstation 2 - July 23
72. Lost Sea - Playstation 4 - July 24
73. Far Cry Primal - Playstation 4 - July 27
74. Black - Playstation 2 - July 28
75. Until Dawn - Playstation 4 - July 31


August (15 Games Beaten)
76. Divine Sealing - Mega Drive - August 1
77. Gal*Gun: Double Peace - Playstation 4 - August 2
78. Valkyria Chronicles II - PSP - August 5
79. Breach and Clear - Vita - August 10
80. Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem - Gamecube - August 12
81. Metal Gear Solid - Playstation - August 15
82. Hello Kitty Kruisers - Wii U - August 16
83. Monster Monpiece - Vita - August 17
84. Army Men: Major Malfunction - Xbox - August 17
85. Layers of Fear - Steam - August 18
86. Kirby: Planet Robobot- 3DS - August 19
87. Disaster: Day of Crisis - Wii - August 20
88. Caladrius Blaze - PlayStation 4 - August 20
89. Söldner-X 2: Final Prototype - Vita - August 22
90. Saints Row IV - PS4 - August 30


September (8 Games Beaten)
91. Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA X - PS4 - September 2
92. Attack on Titan - PS4 - September 3
93. SOMA - Steam - September 5
94. Assault Suit Leynos - PS4 - September 8
95. Attack of the Friday Monsters! - 3DS - September 17
96. The Witcher - GOG.com - September 19
97. GunValkyrie - Xbox - September 21
98. P.N.03 - Gamecube - September 22


October (10 Games Beaten)
99. XCOM 2 - PS4 - October 3
100. Gears of War: Judgement - Xbox 360 - October 8
101. Ninja Pizza Girl - Wii U - October 8
102. Depth Hunter 2: Deep Dive - Steam - October 9
103. EVE: Valkyrie - PlayStation 4 - October 14
104. Gears of War 4 - Xbox One - October 18
105. Until Dawn: Rush of Blood - PlayStation 4 - October 18
106. Battlefield 1 - PlayStation 4 - October 20
107. EVE: Gunjack - PlayStation 4 - October 20
108. Titanfall 2 - PlayStation 4 - October 30


November (6 Games Beaten)
109. The Sky Crawlers: Innocent Aces - Wii - November 3
110. Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel - Vita - November 6
111. Deus Ex: Human Revolution - Wii U - November 11
112. State of Decay - Xbox One - November 15
113. Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare - PlayStation 4 - November 20
114. Shadow Complex Remastered - PlayStation 4 - November 22


December (5 Games Beaten)
115. The Legendary Axe - TurboGrafx-16 - December 3
116. Rise of the Tomb Raider - PlayStation 4 - December 4
117. Ys Origin - Steam - December 7
118. Pokémon Moon - 3DS - December 8
119. Tales of Fantasia - SNES - December 15


119. Tales of Fantasia - SNES - December 15

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I got Tales of Phantasia as a birthday present last week when I turned 25. I had been wanting to explore some more Japanese 8 and 16 bit RPGs since I can use translation patches on my Retron 5, and one of my college buddies came through for me by ordering me a copy of this. I also wanted to play it because darsparx was also playing it (and had a good bit of a headstart, so I wanted to see if I could beat it before he; I did).

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The story is fairly standard for a 16-bit RPG - evil magic guy kills a lot of people, plucky band of ridiculously underaged heroes tries to save world, every kingdom on the planet ends up indebted to them, yay player. The story definitely isn't bad, and there are a few parts that just crush your heart underfoot, but it's not going to do much to surprise you if you're familiar with the standard RPG formula. The characters, however, are extremely likable. Or at least Arche is. She's incredible, especially if you use the DeJap translation patch (it takes a few entertaining liberties with the dialogue translation).

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As for the gameplay, it plays like a bit of a blend of JRPG and ARPG styles. It's got the inventory management, part setup, and overworld system and random encounters of your standard JRPG, but the actual combat takes place in real time on a 2D plane. You can pull up a menu that pauses time to use items or have your party members use a magic spell, but they mostly act on their own depending on which of four "tactics" options you picked. They're also not exceptionally bright; they have a tendency to use spells repeatedly that end up healing certain enemies, so you've got to keep on top of your AI management. The combat is where the game started to lose me. I love JRPGs. I like ARPGs. I'd prefer my RPGs pick one of the two. I know a lot of people really like that hybrid style, but I'm not a big fan of it.

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My other big gripe with the game is the encounter rate. Jesus Christ on a bicycle, it's like every four steps, there's an enemy. I know that's fairly standard for older JRPGs, but still, it got really old really fast. The one bright side to that is that you (almost) never need to grind for money for exp because you spend so much time massacreing owls and stepping on fairies. By no means does the enconter rate break the game, but it gets REALLY irritating when you're trying to figure out how to get through a dungeon, and throughout most of the game, it says "irritating." It doesn't make thing "hard" until the last couple dungeons when enemies and environmental hazards really start doing a number on you.

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One thing that I absolutely have to point out is the audio design. The soundtrack is really stellar, and it reminded me all over again of why I usually prefer the Super Nintendo sound chip over that in the Sega Genesis - the music is just so smooth and well done. I know that's partly because Namco really has its shit together, but I can't help but think that it just wouldn't sound as smooth on Genesis. But as great as the music is, that's not the most impressive part of the sound design. The most impressive part is the voice acting. Yes, voice acting in a 16-bit cartridge game. It's not like fully acted cut scenes, but each spell has recorded dialogue that plays when its used, and there's some EXTREMELY impressive dialogue in the game's opening. I know it's not unheard of - there's a little bit of that in a couple of my Sailor Moon games - but the extent to which it's used in Tales of Phantasia and the quality of the voice recording really impressed me. It may not be a "technical marvel," but it's certainly very impressive. Another thing that impressed me was how smooth and detailed the paralax scrolling is. I know paralax scrolling is common on the Super Nintendo, but the smooth fluidity and detail of the backgrounds really impressed me. Other flaws aside, the game is extremely please to hear and see.

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I have my own gripes with some stylistic choices for the game, but I can't hold subjective preferences against it. Tales of Phantasia is an extremely well made and good looking RPG, and it's a shame that it took more than a decade for it reach American shores. I can't attest to the quality of the remakes since I played the Super Famicom original, but I was extremely impressed with the qualty Namco coaxed out of the hardware, and I thoroughly enjoyed most of my time playing it. I wouldn't recommend it for casual RPG players, but for serious fans of the genre and of the Super Nintendo in particular, this needs to go on your game queue.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by marurun Fri Dec 16, 2016 11:16 am

Sarge, we may not entirely agree on our political views of the world, but I have hella love for your gaming preferences right now : ) We seem to feel very similarly about a lot of games.

I, too, was frustrated by the arcade Contras. Aiming just felt so inaccurate and squishy. Contra demands you be able to point a bullet in a direction on a moment's notice, and you just can't do that in the arcade.

I think the Double Dragon games were also better on the NES.
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